Cape Town awarded seven Blue Flag beach awards

The new season of Blue Flag South Africa was launched at Muizenberg beach on Thursday 29 October 2009, with no less than 29 beaches South African beaches (up from last year’s 19) being awarded Blue Flag status. Seven of these beaches are found in Cape Town.

Commenting on the achievement, Cape Town Tourism CEO, Mariette du-Toit Helmbold, says that the Blue Flag endorsement was a thumbs-up for tourism, “International travellers have confidence in the Blue Flag indicator. Having as many Blue Flag-graded beaches as we do, accurately suggests that the Cape coastline is not only beautiful but well-maintained and protected as one of our greatest resources.”

Blue Flag is an international annual award given to beaches that meet excellence in the areas of safety, amenities, cleanliness, environmental information and environmental management.  The Blue Flag programme is currently run in over 40 countries globally and interest in the programme continues to grow.  There are now over 4,000 Blue Flag beaches and marinas around the world.  In South Africa, the programme is run by WESSA, the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa in partnership with participating local authorities, Blue Flag helps to contribute to the aims of the White Paper on Sustainable Coastal Development.

Commenting on the improved accolade Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk, Minister of Tourism, said that, “It is critical that we offer both domestic and international visitors clean, safe and well-managed beaches. The main catalyst for the increase in the number of Blue Flag beaches has been the opportunities that have arisen as a result of the 2010 Soccer World Cup. Municipalities participating in the programme have seen the benefits of having Blue Flag beaches and wish to be in a position to offer and promote their Blue Flag beaches to 2010 visitors and those who plan to return to South Africa in the future”.

Local authorities report a number of spin-offs from being awarded Blue Flag status, including an increase in visitors, improved behaviour on the part of beach-goers, property prices rising for homes near Blue Flag beaches - and visitors enjoying a well cared-for and managed beach.

CAPE TOWN’S BLUE FLAG BEACHES

Big Bay beach, Bloubergstrand Cape Town (new)
Clifton 4th beach, Cape Town  
Camps Bay, Cape Town                        
Muizenberg, Cape Town                                
Strandfontein beach, Cape Town            
Mnandi beach, Cape Town
Bikini beach, Gordon’s Bay    

REST OF SOUTH AFRICA’S BLUE FLAG BEACHES

Yzerfontein Main beach, Yzerfontein (new) 
MacDougall’s Bay, Port Nolloth (new)                               
Kleinmond beach, near Hermanus (back in program)         
Hawston beach, near Hermanus                      
Grotto beach, Hermanus                                
Lappiesbaai, Stilbaai, Southern Cape        
Santos beach, Mossel Bay       (new)               
Hartenbos beach, Mossel Bay (new) 
Robberg 5 beach, Plettenberg Bay (new) 
Dolphin beach, Jeffrey’s Bay          
Humewood beach, Port Elizabeth    
Hobie beach, Port Elizabeth            
Wells Estate, north of Port Elizabeth          
Kelly’s beach, Port Alfred                                
Kariega Main beach, Kenton-on-Sea (new)
Boknes beach, Kenton-On-Sea   (new)
Gonubie beach, East London   (back in program)
Trafalgar beach, south coast Kzn       (new)
Marina beach, south coast Kzn        
Ramsgate beach, near Margate              
Margate beach                                  
Alkantstrand, Richards Bay (new)

ENDS

Released for Cape Town Tourism by
Brenda Vos
Rabbit in a Hat Communications
brenda@rabbitinahat.co.za
+ 27 21 447 3198
+ 27 82 961 9433

For more info on Cape Town Tourism
Lianne Burton – Executive Manager, Marketing
lianne@capetown.travel
+27 21 487 6800
+27 82 926 0505
www.capetown.travel

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